Holy hail!

Identifying hail damage on roof systems

Editor's note: Following is the second in a two-part series addressing hail damage to roof systems. Part one appeared in the May issue, page 34, and focused on steep-slope roof systems.

Following hailstorms, roofing professionals, insurance professionals and building owners often automatically assume roof systems need to be repaired or replaced. However, though hail can inflict serious damage on roof systems, this is not always the case.

To identify hail damage on low-slope roof systems, you must understand basic properties of various low-slope roof system types and be able to recognize the effects of other natural perils, inherent manufacturing issues and typical weathering issues.

As I mentioned in part one, a roof system is not considered functionally damaged by hail unless the roof's weather resistance capabilities are diminished or the roof's expected service life is reduced. And whether a roof system is functionally damaged by hail depends on the hail size and hardness and roof system type and condition.